Skinny Puppy invoices US military for using its music for torture



I’m a bit annoyed that musicians want to micromanage the way their work is used once it is released. The US government wasn’t making copies. They weren’t making public performances for profit. Can Skinny Puppy say whether each and every time their music is played the listeners are doing it correctly?

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On the contrary, I think this is a brilliant use of the law to make a point. I can’t imagine they actually want the money – presumably if they ever got it, they’d donate it – but arguing ethics means nothing to those in power in the U.S., so let’s hit 'em where it hurts, and where they can’t argue: after all, they worship capitalism.



They can say every time it’s played to rectally-fed prisoner, that someone is doing something wrong.

Then where did all the money go?

I think the more entertaining question is why the RIAA isn’t jumping on this case. What do they normally charge, $5000 per illegal play? Cey is probably under-billing. He’s such a patriot!


But what law? Just because Liberation music sends takedown notices to Lawerence Lessig,that doesn’t mean the law is on their side. If there is a law that says an artist can tell me what I can do privately with their work after I purchase it, I want that law repealed. No, I don’t want to torture people with music (although some people at parties would object to my more esoteric choices.) but I don’t artists to tell me when I can or can’t display it.

Maybe Skinny Puppy could say that the playing of it was a “public performance”. That seems like a stretch though.

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I’m not sure I did. I don’t want the US to torture, neither does Skinny Puppy. I interact with copyright more frequently than I interact with torture, so people bending copyright law to obtain their tangental has much more effect on me.

They are using the music for “business” purposes: that seem pretty clear cut. Skinny Puppy deserve a portion of the profits, which were apparently substantial.


They were playing the music through speakers at a workplace specifically so that non-employees at the workplace could hear it.

When a store or restaurant does that, they have to pay fees.


It is a bit of an odd time/place to be annoyed about this issue, and the phrasing of the objection itself is odd, so much that I wonder if this comment is some kind of Larry David impression!

“Can Skinny Puppy say whether each and every time their music is played the listeners are doing it correctly?”

In this case, both Skinny Puppy and the (forced) listeners did not want the music used in the way it was allegedly used.

Also, given… torture… I have to say it seems like a vastly different scale of thing to complain about. It’s like if we had a story about the US Government shoving Epson ink cartridges up children’s asses and you complained about how Epson is always wanting you to buy their cartridges instead of using 3rd party cartridges. I mean, yeah… that’s kind of annoying and everything. I’m trying to think of an analogy here… complaining about food you were served on the Titanic? Mentioning how annoying it is to find a parking spot on a campus that was the location of a recent mass shooting? There’s something very Seinfeld in the narcissism of bringing attention to the minor annoyance of yourself in a story about, you know, people who were tortured.

Not that I’m complaining. “Curb Your Enthusiasm” was a fun show.


Are they trying to buy 100 Apple I’s?

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When they purchased the original copy they agreed to terms of use. Those terms preclude public broadcast.

Or, if they failed to purchase an original copy then they can be subject to criminal prosecution and civil action. (Would be fun to see this case played out in the courts.)

They weren’t making public performances for profit

If you had been paying any attention, whatsoever, over the last 10 years you would know that “not for profit” makes no difference. A good example found after a trivial search…

Can Skinny Puppy say whether each and every time their music is played the listeners are doing it correctly?

A rather silly pointless obtuse question. The answer is obviously “no”.


Someone needs to let the band “War” know that my neighbors have used their music during extensive sleep-deprivation experiments on my person.

By the way: Sleep deprivation is torture. I guarantee it.


The Pentagon is pretty stupid for using their music.

They should have been smart and used this band’s^ catalog instead


I concur. In my case it was several weeks of incessant jackhammers.

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Piledrivers at building sites. OH MY! The Piledrivers!

Could you imagine being the guy they try that on who just starts singing along?

“Hey, can you guys play the Richard 23 remix of Assimilate? Totally a sphincter relaxer for me.”

/no one else?

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War? Really? I haven’t heard them in decades! Sweeeeeeeeet.

Want to hear War playing? I think there are such concerts in Eastern Ukraina.

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